Name: Hyuncheol Lee
Lenten Commitment: Give up TV, YouTube, anime, manga, and Korean webtoons. Help his mother around the house. Keep a QT journal.
For Lent this year, I gave up a lot of things. I gave up watching TV, YouTube, and anime and gave up reading manga and Korean webtoons. I even started doing extra things around the house and am doing my QT every day while keeping a journal.
This had been going well, but I have realized that is not the point of Lent. I had started Lent this year with the mentality of becoming a better person, kind of like a New Year’s Resolution. And focused on getting better sleeping habits, I restricted myself from doing a lot of things.
They had gotten so bad that I would stay up until 2 a.m. without a second thought. This affected my school life where I would either go to school at noon or fall asleep in class. And it has made my family life worse and made it not a fun time. So, I cut back more and more, thinking I would become a better person through this.
But again, Lent is not about becoming a better person, it is a time to stop relying on these things for entertainment and experience God more deeply. And eventually, I started to see this.
I remember one sermon Pastor Dan gave where he said that if you live for God, everything follows through automatically. Ben teacher wrote me a letter that said, in Christianity, it is not about what you do when things get hard, it is about Who you turn to.
I think turning to the things of the world is a lot like leaning on fragile glass. The more you lean on that glass, eventually it will crack and give in, and soon the joy you had in it quickly turns to pain. I think I am learning to come back to Jesus little by little who I know will never break or let me fall.
And since I gave up these things and started doing QT, I have noticed my mood overall improve. I expect that, when Lent is over, I will go back to reading webtoons and watching TV and YouTube, but I think I will definitely do so to a lesser extent. And I think the experience has taught me a lot.
I have realized that my relationship with Jesus up til now has been really slim. At church I am constantly reminded of Jesus, but outside is a different story. People at school never talk about religion and there are no signs of any sort of religion at school. Friends do not want to talk about religion since my school is very diverse and they are scared about talking about different ideas – scared of being “weird”.
This type of mentality has slowly changed me to the point where my relationship with Jesus had slowly deteriorated without me even knowing. I hope I stay with Jesus and never forget what I have learned through this Lent experience. And I hope other people at DSYG can experience Jesus by letting go of something that blocks you from him.
I used to think of Lent as an assignment, a dark time in your life without your normal entertainment, but it’s an opportunity to get closer to Jesus and learn what you can handle.
Editor’s note: Hyuncheol also wrote a Lent Reflection in 2017. To read that post, click here.
This post is a part of DSYG’s Lent Reflections series meant to educate and inspire readers on the season of Lent and its value in any Christian’s relationship with Christ. For more information on this series, click here.
To read more posts in this year’s series, click here.